Brad Barnes dines at Côte at Church Street, Peterborough city centre

A new look for Côte in Peterborough but the food remains as good as ever

Peterborough’s Côte restaurant has undergone something of a change – not exactly a French revolution, but none the less Vive La Difference.

By Brad Barnes
Saturday, 25th June 2022, 7:14 pm

For starters it has dropped the word “Brasserie” from the name to just Cote, the colour of the frontage is noticeably different to passersby and inside there is a lighter, fresher feel, still clearly French-inspired.

It is all designed to offer an “elevated dining experience to guests” – very elegant indeed, modern and inspired by classic French interiors.

It is a move towards creating a stylish and informal space that is perfect for both daytime and relaxed evening dining, for which it is already well known but appealing to a perhaps younger clientele than previously.

And the appeal is clearly there – 6pm on Saturday, four days after reopening following the refurb, and it was busy. By the time we finished dining, very busy.

It was just a shame the front bifold doors weren’t open to add to the Parisian cafe culture feel, but the sun was having a day off!

There are, as of last week, some new additions to a summer menu, but what is on offer from the a la carte and set menus (prix fixe is available Monday-Friday only) covers all tastes stacked with meat and fish dishes with plenty of vegan and vegetarian options.

We stayed pretty traditional to be fair.

Donna’s meal was very French and an enjoyable light meal.

Her easy on the eye starter was a pea and olive tartlet (£6.95) – olive tapenade, tomatoes, roasted pine nuts, rocket. Simple but tasty.

What my French onion soup (£6.50) lacked in looks it delivered in terms of taste – packed with onion flavour without being overpowering the highlight of this rustic favourite was the stringy, chewy cheesy gloop in the middle!

My main ticked so many boxes – beef cheek bourguignon (£17.50). The slow-cooked beef cheek just melted, the sauce was rich and indulgent, soaking up the mushrooms and bacon lardons, while the thick and creamy potato purée was the ideal accompaniment.

Less decadent across the table, the tuna Niçoise (£14.95) across the table proved everything it promised to be.

A nicely cooked, sesame crusted piece of tuna, free-range soft egg, artichokes, anchovies, red onion and potatoes, with a lovely vinaigrette bringing it all together.

Donna rounded her meal off with a light, fruity and palate cleansing tarte au citron (£6.75) - yummy blueberries with a vanilla crème fraîche.

Mine was equally classic – crème brulee (£6.75), the unmistakeable caramelised vanilla custard. A real treat.

The children’s menu was good value (£6.95 for two course, £8.95 for three) both of ours had crisp, golden calamari; decent sized burger with frites; and chocolate fondant with ice cream which went down very well.

Bookings are available at www.cote.co.uk/restaurant/peterborough/

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